Hyundai set to launch its first EV in India ahead of Maruti

    We’ve been hearing for a while about Tata and Maruti Suzuki working on their electric cars for the Indian market, what comes as a surprise is the announcement of Hyundai on the launch of its first electric car in India which would be made available in 2019 which would still put them ahead of Maruti Suzuki in the eco-race. This announcement was made by Hyundai India Managing Director, YK Koo as he revealed several interesting updates and details about the car. This car will be brought to India via the CKD route and then be assembled in the Indian production plants. This helps reduce the import duties on the car and helps generate employment at the same time.

    This also means that the car won’t be exclusive to India, rather it is expected to be a part of the global range and the Ioniq sedan is one possible car that is expected to go electric, the other is the Kona SUV. Of these two options, we are hoping for the Kona to be launched first as the demand is higher for suvs in the semi-premium upper 20L segment.

    The choice of CKD according to Mr. Koo’s statement is given the lack of assurity on the success of EV products in the Indian market, however, the company wanted to take the opportunity and showcase their technology. The company was looking for a more clear idea from the government but cannot wait and are hoping for more clarity once the detailed roadmap is announced by the Niti Aayog.

    Here’s Mr. Koo’s statement:

    The product will be brought to India in a complete knocked down version (CKD) because we are not much assured of the success of EV products in the Indian market but to showcase that we have the technology. We are bringing this EV product as CKD to test the market. We need a clear picture from the government but we cannot wait. Still, we are waiting for a detailed road map to be proposed and developed by the Niti Aayog.

    The Kona SUV from Hyundai first made its appearance in the Motor Show as a concept car last year and the production release of the car was first seen in the Geneva Auto Show. The SUV is expected to run on rechargeable lithium-ion batteries and is expected to have a maximum range of 384 kilometers on a full charge.

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